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Niagara County declares state of emergency, as Lake Ontario water levels rapidly climbing

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Mon, May 20th 2019 11:55 pm

At a press conference at Olcott Marina, Niagara County and New York officials declared a state of emergency for every shoreline district that could potentially be affected by rising Lake Ontario water levels.

Niagara County, along with the towns of Newfane, Wilson, Porter and Somerset, and villages of Wilson and Youngstown, have declared a state of emergency for the shoreline of Lake Ontario and lower Niagara River. An emergency order has also been issued by Niagara County for idle speedboat operations; it extends out to a distance of 500 feet from the shoreline.

“A state of emergency has been declared following the continuous measures being taken as the Lake water levels continue to rise,” Niagara County Director of Emergency Management Jonathan Schultz said. “Due to the uncertainty of water levels and weather conditions, this was a necessary action to prepare for inevitable flooding.”

Legislator John Syracuse, who represents Newfane, expressed his gratitude for the collaborative efforts: “I wish to thank the governor and his staff for taking swift action in declaring this state of emergency. This will enable our community, in partnership with the state of New York, to quickly and efficiently work to combat the serious threat high Lake Ontario levels will have on our residents.”

Legislator David Godfrey, who represents Wilson, also offered his appreciation for the measures being taken: “Governor Cuomo's emergency declaration will help our shoreline businesses and residents prepare for what is forecasted as a repeat of the flooding of 2017. Our county's emergency services and volunteer first responders stand ready to help in any way they can.”

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